Texas Tech University

School of Music Set to Host University Symphony Orchestra Concert

Sarah Karda

October 2, 2018

The performance will include a concerto written for Ted Ludwig.

University Symphony Orchestra Concert
University Symphony Orchestra Concert

The Texas Tech University School of Music, housed in the J. T. & Margaret Talkington College of Visual & Performing Arts, will premiere a concerto written for acclaimed seven-string jazz guitarist and musician-in-residence Ted Ludwig, and features the “Concerto for Jazz Guitar and Orchestra: Katrina,” composed by Texas Tech instructor of composition D. J. Sparr. In 2016, Ludwig was the youngest inductee ever into the Arkansas Jazz Hall of Fame.

The performance will be at 7:30 p.m. on Friday (Oct. 5) in the Hemmle Recital Hall, and is free and open to the public.

Named one of NPR Music listeners' “favorite composers under 40,” Sparr has composed for and performed with internationally renowned ensembles like the New World Symphony, Washington National Opera and Eighth Blackbird. The concert will be the academic setting premiere of his concerto. 

Philip Mann, director of orchestral studies and professor of practice, will conduct the concert. Mann has been elected a Rhodes Scholar, won the Vienna Philharmonic's Karajan Fellowship at the Salzburg Festival and is an American Conducting Fellow.

The concerto follows the tale of the Great Flood, bringing in elements of rain drops and long-sustained chords acting as the rising sun and sky. It was written for Ludwig, an evacuee of Hurricane Katrina, and portrays the story of escape from rising floodwaters and finding strength in a new home.

The concert also will feature “Symphony No. 7 in A major, Opus 92” by Beethoven. Published in 1816, the symphony was dedicated to Count Moritz von Fries and contains the most recognized music in the classical canon.